There’s a lot to be said about the crew lifestyle. On one hand, it’s extremely tough, monotonous hard work. On the other, highly rewarding and laced with the opportunity to do things very few people in the world can afford to do.
It is well known that crew are handsomely paid, or rather, have the opportunity to save considerable sums. This cash may be used to pay for education, mortgages or to start businesses, but equally, there are incalculable stories of money spent on just having a wild time.
For those who want guidance on what to do with their cash, there are a number of experienced advisors in the industry, who know and understand the exact requirements of crew. These teams are able to tailor advice to your needs, whether it’s saving or spending.
Safe as houses
Many choose to invest their money in property. This could be at home for family, a rental proposition or possibly even a second home. But perhaps the challenges of a career in yachting is affecting your loan situation with lenders?
As Mark Upton of CrewFO observed, “Investing in rental property is a great idea for crew as it reduces your financial liabilities and means that essentially someone else is paying your mortgage for you. Crew have challenges specific to yachting, such as occupation, source of funds and currency of salary, so we help with all of these and our mortgage team have a 100% success rate with crew to date.”
Where should you buy?
It makes sense to buy what you know because there is perceived less risk. But what do you know? Perhaps it’s much wider than you realise. Being crew at sea, sailing the coastline and into the myriad marinas around the world, you have first-hand experience and insight into good, medium to long-term opportunities.
For example, regular readers will know that the team at SYC is particularly partial to the Adriatic, and after visiting the region earlier this year, Montenegro especially. Nestled between Croatia and Albania, Montenegro’s expansive coastline has lured visitors with historic fortifications, UNESCO-listed landscapes and pretty coastal villages. The region is being invested in heavily now, with arguably the majority coming from the Middle East. Indeed, economic impact studies by the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) put Montenegro into the spotlight as one of the fastest growing travel and tourism economies globally over the next half-decade, and by 2021 capital investment in travel and tourism is forecast to be 50.8%.
A calculated investment
When you consider this, the personal investment opportunities are considerable. Of course, not without risk, but even in this region, there are safer options – not least the now well-established Porto Montenegro. Despite the size of the village now, there is still 70%+ to develop.
The incentives to buy here are hugely attractive, with only 9% VAT on company and capital gains tax (one of the lowest in Europe – and you might be well advised to establish a company in Montenegro to purchase a property with a view to rentals). In fact, Porto Montenegro is forging a new concept for Adriatic ports and offering to reimburse people’s stays if they come and then book a long lease berth making it the perfect excuse to have a look for yourself for free!
It has tax free incentives
Furthermore, there is an additional incentive for yachts to make the marina their homeport. With no tax on charters, no national insurance on foreign crew, reduced VAT on marine services and duty and tax-free fuel advance Porto Montenegro’s merit as a financially pragmatic charter base. You can have a home in the winter period, close to your place of work, that’s paid for by letting it in the summer when you’re at your busiest. What’s not to love?
Crucially, the infrastructure and conditions to support investment at Porto Montenegro are pointing in the right direction for smart growth. With the opening of the refit yard (more announcements on this to come), you would be forgiven for thinking the smart money would come from the crew who are already in the know. So the question shouldn’t be where to buy, but how much can I afford to invest? Enquiries can be made here.
*Disclaimer this does not constitute investment advice and you invest in property at your own risk*